Diet sodas are actually one of the biggest enemies of weight loss. People make the switch to diet sodas with the best of intentions, trading in high calorie beverages for zero calorie alternatives, but really, diet sodas are just as bad as their high-fructose sweetened partners. Helen P. Hazuda, a professor at University of Texas Science Center who has researched diet sodas and their effect on weight says, “they may be free of calories, but not of consequences.”

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Hazuda was a researcher in a large, 10 year study that compared diet soda drinkers to non-diet soda drinkers. They found that people who drank diet soda, as a group, had a 70% greater increase in waist circumference over the ten years than those who didn’t drink any diet soda. For those people who drank 2 or more diet sodas a day, the increase in waist size was six times greater than those who didn’t drink any diet soda. That is a big increase.

A separate study found that aspartame, a common no-calorie sweetener, raised blood sugar levels of diabetes-prone mice after three months of feeding.

This means that drinking diet soda could not only increase your waist line but also increase your risk of developing diabetes.

The bottom line: diet sodas are not a healthy alternative to regular soda. For lots more information on artificial sweeteners and how they are sabotaging your diet, see these posts:

Things Everyone Should Know About Artificial Sweeteners

What is in Your Diet Soda

Artificial Sweeteners = Weight Gain

“Diet Sodas Don’t Help with Dieting” My Health News Daily. June 28, 2011.